OK.........take a deep breath (adding sail to houseboat?)

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by GOTTABSOMEWHERE, Jul 9, 2009.

    Joined: Jul 2008
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    Location: ST LOUIS MO


    Has anyone put a sail on a HOUSEBOAT ???
    Now keep calm don't flip out...........I'm not suggesting a cruise into open water b ut rather just some movement on protected water.
    My thoughts go to the historic "GUNDALOW" in new england.
    These barges were used ofr cargo hauling .
    Think about it before you respond.
  2. Submarine Tom

    Submarine Tom Previous Member


    Other than the fact that a houseboat is a sail, of course you can put a sail

    on one. But a kite would work better.

  3. Michael W
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    Michael W Junior Member

    This is similar to the trawler design that I am building. This particular one is a GEORGE BUEHLER design built by Seahorse Marine. I was either on this one or on a sister ship in Seattle last year and was quite impressed. It is shown here with sails. I think you can get 2-3 knotts (not exactly sure) without engines and with engines you can certainly reduce your engine RPM to save fuel. Plus it works as a steadying sail. Not quite a housboat, but could give you some ideas.

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  4. elskimo
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    elskimo Junior Member

    Give it a shot. The only thing that you may want to consider is all the people looking at you saying wtf. But I think it would be cool.
  5. Luckless
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    Luckless Senior Member

    Well, he might want to consider the effects on balance it could have and whether or not it is likely to tip itself over in the first steady wind. Remember a sail is a big lever, and the bottom of the boat has to be be able to counter the force along the sail and mast, and the boat itself has to be able to take the strain.

    Most houseboats aren't exactly the best when it comes to even motoring around. I'm not sure I would want to join you on the maiden voyage, no matter how sheltered the water you're in.
  6. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    I think it is a great idea. In the end of the nineteen century, sailing house boat were commun site. I have other pictures which I will put in.
    I think it should be more develloped, since these beautiful vessel went in complete oblition, and deserve a second chance.

  7. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    Designed by Commodore R.M. Munroe in 1903

    1 person likes this.
  8. mydauphin
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    mydauphin Senior Member

    Slow. Make sure you have engine in case wind is blowing wrong way....
    Make sure you don't over do it, it might tear your house boat apart, it was not design to take the loads. I sail generates a lot more power than you might think even if you boat does not move because of it.
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    Sailing Houseboat

    Hey Diskera

    I knew it .................If it could be done somebody did it !

    I see you home is Maine............Hve you seen the 'GUNDALOW" ? I think
    it's in New Hampshire. That's what inspired my thinking.
    Like your ole' tyme pics.

    To other responders...............DUH ! I wasn't thinking of putting a sail on a regular modern house boat but sometning more like a barge or canal boat.
    The concept was to act as a "pusher " to augment engine power going upstream and primary power going downstream. I would like to navigate some of the great USA rivers.

    Looked at motorsailers but thought them to heavy etc.

    Any morre comments ?
  10. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    Yes one, if you use a term in future, make sure you use the right one!
    A canal barge is´nt a houseboat. And the pictures shown by dskira do´nt show houseboats! One shows a barge, the other a sailing vessel.
    But we are familiar with the off topic pictures that self appointed "NA" provides.
  11. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    well perhaps it is slightly of the subject GOTTABSOMEWHERE would like to discuss, but I think some kind of sailing houseboat can be rebirth as a fonctional hollyday residence on a coastal water, without the necessary performance of a modern sailboat.
    The comfort in a real space, a flat hull, a low aspect ratio rig, a small engine and the possibility to do the canals, mast being on tabernacle.
    The small engine for the canals when needed and the sail to enjoy a quiet ride during a coastal journey. A rather stable platform with perhaps two centerboard to don't interfer with the cabin accommodation, will allow the houseboat to beach, or close too.
    The ultimate stability will be the difficult point. Using a rather high cabin trunk cabin as adding lateral buoyancy in case of knock down (happened here in Maine with one of the Windjammer, and she stayed flat on the water!) and ballast can be a safeguard, but that should be studied very carefully. It will be a balance between draft and aptitude. I think Moody have launched some 40' which looks very "houseboaty" with a modern high ratio rig, but I don't know if I am correct about the yard, it was in the Yachting World some months ago.
    Any way, my two cents.
  12. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    By the way GOTTABSOMEWHERE I forget something. You are talking to a "affecionado" of old house boat, I love them, steam, nafta, gazoline, diesel any kind until the Trumpy.
    You can find a book, from were I took the pictures I posted above, called HouseBoat and HouseBoating by Albert Bradley published in 1905 by Forest and Stream, NewYork. Any good nautical antic bookstore can find a copy, you will pay around $60. It is an indepth information about sailing houseboat, and also the maginificient steam houseboat. The plans are something and the pictures are fantastics.
  13. joefaber
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    joefaber Junior Member

    Some of what you're trying to do is discussed in
    "Handmade Houseboats: Independent Living Afloat"
    by Russell Conder (ISBN 0071580220).
    It's 240 Pages cover the basics of houseboat history and design.
    A large portion of the book covers starting point ideas on planning
    the various aspects of the 'house' building. it's worth the $20.
  14. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    Thank you JOEFABER, I didn't know this book, and seams very interresting. I am going to find and buy it.

  15. dskira

    dskira Previous Member

    I went to read the exerpt of "Handmade Houseboats: Independent Living Afloat" in Amazone, but unfortunatly he wrote mostly about stationary house boat, and I am not interrested in this kind of houseboat, only the one who can move by themself like aa boat with propulsion eather by sail or engine.
    But thanks again.
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